Looking for some advice

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joanth...@yahoo.com

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:05:52 AM8/23/05
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Hi,

I'm a published mystery writer trying to break into science fiction.
Can anyone recommend to me any sf mysteries that might be worth a read?
I'm trying to see how the cross-genre has been handled in the past.
I'll also happily accept recommendation for stuff I SHOULDN'T read.

Thanks, everybody!

- Joan

Ted Nolan <tednolan>

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:09:18 AM8/23/05
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In article <1124809552....@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,

The classic place to start on SF mysteries is _The Caves of Steel_ by
Isaac Asimov.

Ted

low key

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:12:58 AM8/23/05
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<joanth...@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1124809552....@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...

Should read:

Niven's Gil the Arm stories. Niven also wrote an essay about how to go
about writing an SF mystery. I _think_ he may have included it in N-Space or
Playgrounds of the Mind.

Asimov's R. Daneel Olivaw/Elijah Bailey novels. He also wrote some short
stories involving Olivaw/Bailey.

--
'As far as I'm concerned,
I prefer silent vice to ostentatious virtue.'
-albert einstein


joanth...@yahoo.com

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:15:25 AM8/23/05
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Ted -

Thanks for the wonderfully quick reply. I've actually read The Caves
of Steel. It was okay. Asimov is good, but he doesn't do as much as
I'd like with his characters. I also read this other one. It was
called Phobos, by Ty Drago. I don't think the author's done anything
else. That one was much better.

Somebody recommended Kiln People by David Brin, but I've haven't picked
that one up yet.

- Ty

joanth...@yahoo.com

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:18:00 AM8/23/05
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Oh, thank you, low_key! That's a huge help! :-)

Nick Keighley

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:33:13 AM8/23/05
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nobody recomended this:-

"A Quantum Murder" by Peter F. Hamilton
"It was the third thursday in January, and after a fortnight of daily
drizzles, the first real storm of England's monsoon season was due
to..."

he wrote three (to my knowledge) in the world. This one is murder
mystery.


--
Nick Keighley

Dorothy J Heydt

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:30:03 AM8/23/05
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Quick digression on the subject of SF mysteries.

Back in the 1940s-1950s the major SF editor of the day, John W.
Campbell Jr., propounded that you couldn't write a decent SF
mystery, that the answer to whodunit could be something the
reader couldn't have known about because the author just invented
it. But as you know, that kind of thing isn't a good mystery
either. To explain whodunit in the last chapter with a South
American blowgun dart poison previously unknown to the civilized world is cheating. So is bringing in a gadget you've just
invented. But if you follow the rules for a good mystery, and
use elements that either (a) are already generally known to the
reasonably scientifically-literate community, or (b) you or your
characters have carefully planted beforehand, then you can write
good SF mysteries.

Isaac Asimov wrote several good SF mysteries. (He also wrote
some good "straight" mysteries; you might look up his _Murder at
the ABA_.) Begin with his novels _The Caves of Steel_ and _The
Naked Sun._ Do not by any means go on to read the third book in
the series, _The Robots of Dawn._ Then see if you can find an
anthology _Asimov's Mysteries_, (Doubleday, 1968) containing his
excellent Wendell Urth stories and others not quite so good.

Randall Garrett's Lord Darcy series are also SF mysteries, though
when you look at them you may think "Wait a minute, these people
are using magic, it must be fantasy." The series was started to
play off one of the bees in the bonnet of the abovementioned John
Campbell: that psionic powers (telepathy, telekinesis, etc.) were
real, were latent in some or all humans, and were behind various
reports of "magic" that would otherwise be dismissed as fairy
tales. In Darcy's world psionic magic works and has been studied
and codified for centuries, with the result that technology
hasn't gotten as far as it has in our universe. Lord Darcy is a
criminal investigator for the Duke of Normandy and is frequently
called to London or elsewhere to investigate crimes against the
King's Peace. The Darcy stories have been collected in an
anthology, _Lord Darcy_ by Baen. Don't be put off by the
ridiculous cover.

Those are the ones that immediately come to my mind. Others here
will suggest more.

Dorothy J. Heydt
Albany, California
djh...@kithrup.com


James Nicoll

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:49:18 AM8/23/05
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Doesn't JD Robb have a popular series?

Westlake used to write SF, left in something of huff but still
does the odd fantasy or light SF (HUMANS and SMOKE from a few years ago).

Asimov, of course.

Hal Clement's NEEDLE.

There's a metric crapload of SF that plays on ideas borrowed
from people like Chandler (but not Hammett: too bolshie and too into
treating the job like a job). First person smartass novels have been
written by Zelazny, Brust, Cook and so on (IF you do PI, then Cooks
Adjective Metal Noun series wshould be worth a look).

Nicola Griffith started off in SF but has since been lost to
the dark side. SLOW RIVER has some mystery elements.

Paul McAuley's WHOLE WIDE WORLD starts off as a procedural
in a UK more thoroughly monitored than today and then goes off in a
Gorky Park direction.

I think Russo has a series about a guy called Carluci, which
left no lasting memories on me.

Paul Levinson has a series about a guy named Phil D'Amato.
The one I read did leave me with a lasting impression, in the same
way that semi-molten bit of glass did.

--
http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/immigrate/
http://www.livejournal.com/users/james_nicoll

Shawn Wilson

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Aug 23, 2005, 11:49:40 AM8/23/05
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<joanth...@yahoo.com> wrote in message
news:1124809552....@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...


Well, if you already know how to write mysteries you really don't need SF
examples. What you need pointers on is good SF, for genre pointers. You
can add the mystery stuff yourself.

I will give you one pointer- don't make the investigation tech based (ala
CSI). It will not be convincing and will date quickly.


Good SF, and assuming you haven't read much, there was a recent thread of
recommendations for SF neophytes, would be-

The Mote in God's Eye, by Larry Niven
Cordelia's Honor, by Lois McMaster Bujold
1632, by Eric Flint and 1633 By David Weber and Eric Flint (shelved under W
in stores)
Starship Troopers, by Robert Heinlein
End of Eternity, by Isaac Asimov (who is pretty much the king of SF
mysteries by default)


To name six that come to mind as exceptionally good, or at least personal
favorites.


Mark Loy

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Aug 23, 2005, 1:26:13 PM8/23/05
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In article <1124810125....@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com>,
joanth...@yahoo.com wrote:

> Somebody recommended Kiln People by David Brin, but I've haven't picked
> that one up yet.


Please do so at your earliest convenience--it's quite a fun read and
should provide you with a prime example of how mysteries in sf have almost
limitless potential.

Of course you don't know me from Adam but what the fuck, over?

ML

Dr. Dave

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Aug 23, 2005, 12:35:32 PM8/23/05
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joanth...@yahoo.com wrote:
> Hi,
>
> I'm a published mystery writer trying to break into science fiction.

Any particular flavor of science fiction? Gadgety, or cyberpunk, or
anthropological, or what?

> Can anyone recommend to me any sf mysteries that might be worth a read?

Absolutely.

1. HELLSPARK, by Janet Kagan. Still the best example I know of.
Anthropological sf.

2. THE DEMOLISHED MAN, Alfred Bester. Columbo-type mystery, pulp-style
sf with telepathy. Influenced by CRIME AND PUNISHMENT.

3. THE SPARROW, Mary Doria Russell. First-contact sf, character-driven
psychological mystery.

4. ORCA, Steven Brust. Not very accessible unless you've read all the
other Vlad Taltos novels first, though. Amateur detective procedural.

5. DIRK GENTLY'S HOLISTIC DETECTIVE AGENCY, Douglas Adams. Humorous
romp with serious stakes.

6. HOUSE OF SHARDS, Walter Jon Williams. Humorous caper yarn. Can
also be found in the omnibus TEN POINTS FOR STYLE.

7. THE LONG ARM OF GIL HAMILTON, Larry Niven. Previously mentioned for
good reason. Contains 3 novellas and an essay on writing mystery sf.

8. NIGHT LAMP, Jack Vance. "Mysterious past" novel, anthropological
sf. Vance won an Edgar at one point, so he's a good example of
crossover.

9. LORD DARCY, Randall Garrett. Already described by others.

10. STEALING THE ELF KING'S ROSES, Diane Duane. Police procedural
(well, she's a DA, but close enough). Nominally fantasy, but of the
magic-as-physics variety.

That should do for a start. :-)

> I'm trying to see how the cross-genre has been handled in the past.
> I'll also happily accept recommendation for stuff I SHOULDN'T read.

The normally superb Jack Vance wrote a bunch of very forgettable
mystery sf short stories featuring the detective Magnus Ridolph. I
wouldn't bother with them.

David Tate

Bill Snyder

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Aug 23, 2005, 1:01:18 PM8/23/05
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_20/20 Vision_ by Pamela West hasn't been mentioned. West also wrote
_Yours Truly, Jack the Ripper_, so if you want to see genre-hopping in
action, that one qualifies. IMO a book that deserves to be much
better-known than it is, altho' I should probably mention that its
vision of the (then) future is now alternate history.

--
Bill Snyder [This space unintentionally left blank.]

Gene Ward Smith

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Aug 23, 2005, 1:15:17 PM8/23/05
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joanth...@yahoo.com wrote:

How much of a true sf flavor do you want? At one end you have Asimov
or, another example you might read, Clement's Needle. At the other end
is J. D. Robb, who does very well writing police proceedurals with the
science derived from watching Star Wars movies.

Steve Brooks

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Aug 23, 2005, 1:25:41 PM8/23/05
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The other two are "Mindstar Rising" and "The Nano Flower" and in their own
ways they are all mysteries. The main character, Greg Mandel, is a sort of
investigator for hire. They're good romps IMO; I like them a lot even though
some of the characterisation is rather two dimensional.

They work best read in order even though each could stand alone.

--

SB


joanth...@yahoo.com

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Aug 23, 2005, 3:12:46 PM8/23/05
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My goodness! Well, thank you so much, everybody. I do believe this
should fill my reading list nicely!

Anthony Nance

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Aug 23, 2005, 3:22:27 PM8/23/05
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>Ted -
>
>Thanks for the wonderfully quick reply. I've actually read The Caves
>of Steel. It was okay. Asimov is good, but he doesn't do as much as
>I'd like with his characters. I also read this other one. It was
>called Phobos, by Ty Drago.

Red flag #1


>I don't think the author's done anything
>else. That one was much better.

Red Flag #2


>Somebody recommended Kiln People by David Brin, but I've haven't picked
>that one up yet.
>
>- Ty

--
/\
/||\
||
||
||

Red Flag #3, of solar sail size

Dear Joan/Ty/Scott/WhoeverYouAreThisMonth,

Please notice the wonderful, friendly, informative responses
you got to your mysteries/SF question. You do not need to
pretend to be someone else to elicit such reponses.

If your primary goal is to get people to read Phobos, this can
be done in a straightforward, non-spamming, and especially
non-drive-by way. There is no need to (try to) be so elliptical
or disingenuous.

Tony

James Nicoll

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Aug 23, 2005, 3:46:28 PM8/23/05
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In article <1124824366....@f14g2000cwb.googlegroups.com>,

<joanth...@yahoo.com> wrote:
>My goodness! Well, thank you so much, everybody. I do believe this
>should fill my reading list nicely!
>

You mentioned that you were a published author. May we ask for
titles?

SteveT

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Aug 23, 2005, 4:08:11 PM8/23/05
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On 23 Aug 2005 08:05:52 -0700, joanth...@yahoo.com wrote:

The story is simple. There was a boy who bought the planet Earth...

Read all Cordwainer Smith you can find.

Steve

James Nicoll

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Aug 23, 2005, 4:25:10 PM8/23/05
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In article <deft1j$ool$1...@charm.magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu>,

Anthony Nance <na...@math.ohio-state.edu> wrote:
>In article <1124810125....@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com>,
> <joanth...@yahoo.com> wrote:
>>Ted -
>>
>>Thanks for the wonderfully quick reply. I've actually read The Caves
>>of Steel. It was okay. Asimov is good, but he doesn't do as much as
>>I'd like with his characters. I also read this other one. It was
>>called Phobos, by Ty Drago.
>
>Red flag #1
>
>
>>I don't think the author's done anything
>>else. That one was much better.
>
>Red Flag #2
>
>
>>Somebody recommended Kiln People by David Brin, but I've haven't picked
>>that one up yet.
>>
>>- Ty
> --
> /\
> /||\
> ||
> ||
> ||
>
>Red Flag #3, of solar sail size

Well, gosh. I totally missed that.

Dorothy J Heydt

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Aug 23, 2005, 4:31:53 PM8/23/05
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In article <d70ng199e7u74luno...@4ax.com>,

>On 23 Aug 2005 08:05:52 -0700, joanth...@yahoo.com wrote:
>
>Read all Cordwainer Smith you can find.

Well ... Smith is very good, but I wouldn't say he was
particularly writing in the SF mystery genre. SF Greek tragedy
comes more to mind.

Default User

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Aug 23, 2005, 5:43:31 PM8/23/05
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James Nicoll wrote:

> In article <deft1j$ool$1...@charm.magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu>,
> Anthony Nance <na...@math.ohio-state.edu> wrote:
> > In article <1124810125....@o13g2000cwo.googlegroups.com>,
> > <joanth...@yahoo.com> wrote:
> > > Ted -
> > >
> > > Thanks for the wonderfully quick reply. I've actually read The
> > > Caves of Steel. It was okay. Asimov is good, but he doesn't do
> > > as much as I'd like with his characters. I also read this other
> > > one. It was called Phobos, by Ty Drago.
> >
> > Red flag #1
> >
> >
> > > I don't think the author's done anything
> > > else. That one was much better.
> >
> > Red Flag #2
> >
> >
> > > Somebody recommended Kiln People by David Brin, but I've haven't
> > > picked that one up yet.
> > >
> > > - Ty
> > --
> > /\
> > /||\
> > ||
> > ||
> > ||
> >
> > Red Flag #3, of solar sail size
>
> Well, gosh. I totally missed that.


Wow, I'll say. BUSTED!

I had a couple I was going to contribute, but I don't like getting
played.

Brian

James Nicoll

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Aug 23, 2005, 6:00:02 PM8/23/05
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In article <3n1jk3F...@individual.net>,

By my count, this is the third time he's tried to either defend
PHOBOS or shill it through a sockpuppet. The second time, he forgot
to use a different account than the first time and this time he signed
his own name.

This is an accurate guide to the skill with which PHOBOS was
written.

Cal

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Aug 23, 2005, 6:02:16 PM8/23/05
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How about Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan?

A nice mix of gritty detective tale with some exiting SF concepts, and a
particularly interesting mystery at the heart of it.

--

Cal

Default User

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Aug 23, 2005, 6:11:17 PM8/23/05
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James Nicoll wrote:


> By my count, this is the third time he's tried to either defend
> PHOBOS or shill it through a sockpuppet. The second time, he forgot
> to use a different account than the first time and this time he signed
> his own name.

The old sig line has burned many a sock puppet in the past. And you
know how bad a burning sock puppet smells.

Googling back, I see it was the old, "No no, I'm using someone else's
computer that's why it seems like it's sock puppets."

How hard is it to write a sig file with a blurb and link about your
book and then spend a half-hour a day posting topical material to RASFW?

> This is an accurate guide to the skill with which PHOBOS was
> written.

I'll put it firmly on my Never Read list.


Brian

Wayne Throop

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Aug 23, 2005, 9:29:23 PM8/23/05
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: Cal <calma...@yahoo.co.uk>
: How about Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan?

:
: A nice mix of gritty detective tale with some exiting SF concepts, and a
: particularly interesting mystery at the heart of it.

You forgot to mention, "with gore-squick turned up to nine".
And incredibly, cranked up further for Broken Angels.
Seems to me, anyways.


Wayne Throop thr...@sheol.org http://sheol.org/throopw

David Bilek

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Aug 23, 2005, 10:24:13 PM8/23/05
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thr...@sheol.org (Wayne Throop) wrote:
>: Cal <calma...@yahoo.co.uk>
>: How about Altered Carbon by Richard Morgan?
>:
>: A nice mix of gritty detective tale with some exiting SF concepts, and a
>: particularly interesting mystery at the heart of it.
>
>You forgot to mention, "with gore-squick turned up to nine".
>And incredibly, cranked up further for Broken Angels.
>Seems to me, anyways.
>

I didn't find it particularly gorey, but my gore-o-meter is probably
busted. Ultra violent, yes. Very, very violent. But "gore", to me,
is stuff like China Mieville. With pustulent oozing and slimey ichor.

Blood is nothin'.

-David

Wayne Throop

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Aug 23, 2005, 10:35:44 PM8/23/05
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: David Bilek <dtb...@comcast.net>
: I didn't find it particularly gorey, but my gore-o-meter is probably

: busted. Ultra violent, yes. Very, very violent. But "gore", to me,
: is stuff like China Mieville. With pustulent oozing and slimey ichor.
: Blood is nothin'.

Well OK. But getting brain-matter blasted all over the room (and people
therein), or fishing around in a spine for an implant, or ripping an
implant out of the eyeball of the still-living implantee with a pair of
pliers, I'd consider a bit more than "blood". I mean, at the very
least, that last involves some vitreous fluid.

Hm. Some of those episodes may be from the second book. Maybe.

SteveT

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Aug 24, 2005, 4:38:19 AM8/24/05
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I think it was SF Chinese mythology...

Steve

Bateau

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Aug 24, 2005, 8:28:47 AM8/24/05
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joanth...@yahoo.com wrote:
>Hi,
>
>I'm a published mystery writer trying to break into science fiction.
>Can anyone recommend to me any sf mysteries that might be worth a read?
> I'm trying to see how the cross-genre has been handled in the past.
>I'll also happily accept recommendation for stuff I SHOULDN'T read.
>
>Thanks, everybody!

PLEASE TELL ME THE TOP 10 SCIENCE FICTION MYSTERIES I CAN COPY I NEED A
LOT OF MONEY TO FEED MY MANY CATS.

Anthony Nance

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Aug 24, 2005, 11:56:28 AM8/24/05
to
In article <deg692$sfb$1...@reader2.panix.com>,
James Nicoll <jdni...@panix.com> wrote:
>>
>> <snip Ty Drago busted again>

>>
>
> By my count, this is the third time he's tried to either defend
>PHOBOS or shill it through a sockpuppet. The second time, he forgot
>to use a different account than the first time and this time he signed
>his own name.

After the second time, I decided to read-with-high-suspicion any post
by an unfamiliar poster which brought his book up. Seems to be a good
rule of thumb.

Tony

James Nicoll

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Aug 24, 2005, 11:59:16 AM8/24/05
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In article <dei5bc$19f$1...@charm.magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu>,

Yahoo.com is a bad sign, too.

And now he's over on rec.arts.mystery using the joanthewriter
sockpuppet.

Mark

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Aug 24, 2005, 12:20:48 PM8/24/05
to


> Nicola Griffith started off in SF but has since been lost to
the dark side. SLOW RIVER has some mystery elements. <

Hmm? What do you mean, "the dark side"? The Aud Torvingen books are
thrillers and quite good.

Mark
author of:
THE SECANTIS SEQUENCE
REMAINS
www.marktiedemann.com

James Nicoll

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Aug 24, 2005, 12:35:33 PM8/24/05
to
In article <1124900448.0...@g14g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,

Mark <mtied...@earthlink.net> wrote:
>
>
>
> > Nicola Griffith started off in SF but has since been lost to
>the dark side. SLOW RIVER has some mystery elements. <
>
>Hmm? What do you mean, "the dark side"? The Aud Torvingen books are
>thrillers and quite good.

Mystery. Various unbiased books (CAPTIVE OF THE FLATIRON EMPIRE,
I WAS A TEEN-AGE MYSTERY WRITER, MY NAME IS NO ONE, TWENTY YEARS
CHAINED TO A SMITH UPRIGHT and IF I HAVE TO WRITE ONE MORE GODDAMN BOOK
ABOUT GODDAMN CATS I AM GOING TO SHOOT MYSELF IN THE HEAD) as yet to
written show without a doubt that SF writers who start down the seedy
street of crime fiction, with its _readers_, and _royalties_ and _shelf
space_ and _living indoors_, rarely come back to SF. It's like death,
except that they are still around and moving. Taunting us with their
non-SFnal words...

Default User

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Aug 24, 2005, 12:48:34 PM8/24/05
to
James Nicoll wrote:

> In article <dei5bc$19f$1...@charm.magnus.acs.ohio-state.edu>,
> Anthony Nance <na...@math.ohio-state.edu> wrote:

[Phobos]



> > After the second time, I decided to read-with-high-suspicion any
> > post by an unfamiliar poster which brought his book up. Seems to
> > be a good rule of thumb.
>
> Yahoo.com is a bad sign, too.

Yeah . . . hey wait a minute!

> And now he's over on rec.arts.mystery using the joanthewriter
> sockpuppet.

The funny thing is that Ty could have been completely above board about
this and posted under his own ID. Dishonest people just can help being
dishonest, I guess. It just seems like the sneaky way is the first
thing that pops into their little pea brains.


Brian

James Nicoll

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Aug 24, 2005, 12:56:21 PM8/24/05
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In article <3n3mn2F...@individual.net>,
joanthewriter had an explanation for the curious signature:


Newsgroups: rec.arts.mystery
Subject: Re: Cross genre mystery
References: <1124891875.1...@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com> <Sr6dnROhY-H...@comcast.com> <dei5ds$m42$1...@reader2.panix.com> <1124901186.4...@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>

In article <1124901186.4...@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,
<joanth...@yahoo.com> wrote:
>I appreciate all suggestions. I really had no idea this was such a
>saturated field.
>
>I'm a little disturbed about the post by James Nicoll. I don't know
>what a sockpuppet is, but I'm certainly not one. I don't know what
>happened in the post that he describes, but it looks like maybe some of
>my post was accidently deleted there at the end. I've never met Ty
>Drago. His book was good but far from great, and I'm not promoting it,
>just asking about it.
>
>To those of you with genuine book recommendations, thanks again.

Hallvard B Furuseth

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Aug 24, 2005, 1:33:46 PM8/24/05
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low key <lowk...@hotmail.com> writes:
>joanth...@yahoo.com wrote in message
> news:1124809552....@g44g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...

>> I'm a published mystery writer trying to break into science fiction.
>> Can anyone recommend to me any sf mysteries that might be worth a read?
>> I'm trying to see how the cross-genre has been handled in the past.
>> I'll also happily accept recommendation for stuff I SHOULDN'T read.
>>
>> Thanks, everybody!
>
> Should read:
>
> Niven's Gil the Arm stories.

Yup. Several other Niven stories too. _The Meddler_, _A Kind of
Murder_, maybe _All the Myriad of Ways_. He says, most of his stories
are puzzle stories (I think that's overstating it a bit), so many become
crime/detective stories.

> Niven also wrote an essay about how to go about writing an SF
> mystery. I _think_ he may have included it in N-Space or Playgrounds
> of the Mind.

I don't see it in N-Space, though that book is a bit rambling so I may
have missed it. It is in the afterword to _Flatlander_, a collection of
his 5 Gil the Arm stories. And in _The Long Arm of Gil Hamilton_, an
older collection of his then 3 GtA stories. Actually I'm not sure it
says all that much a good mystery writer doesn't know, it comes more
from the SF angle. But some points, definitely.

--
Hallvard

Default User

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Aug 24, 2005, 2:11:20 PM8/24/05
to
James Nicoll wrote:

> In article <3n3mn2F...@individual.net>,
> Default User <defaul...@yahoo.com> wrote:

> > The funny thing is that Ty could have been completely above board
> > about this and posted under his own ID. Dishonest people just can
> > help being dishonest, I guess. It just seems like the sneaky way is
> > the first thing that pops into their little pea brains.
> >
> joanthewriter had an explanation for the curious signature:

> > I'm a little disturbed about the post by James Nicoll. I don't know


> > what a sockpuppet is, but I'm certainly not one. I don't know what
> > happened in the post that he describes, but it looks like maybe
> > some of my post was accidently deleted there at the end.


Oh that makes perfect sense -- NOT! A quick comparison of the two
messages shows nothing missing, and the same "signature style" only
with different names. Busted.

Note that "Joan" sure didn't hang around long here after that. Nor
responded to the "what books have you written" question.


------------------------------------------
Hi,

I'm a published mystery writer trying to break into science fiction.
Can anyone recommend to me any sf mysteries that might be worth a read?
I'm trying to see how the cross-genre has been handled in the past.
I'll also happily accept recommendation for stuff I SHOULDN'T read.

Thanks, everybody!

- Joan


Ted -

Thanks for the wonderfully quick reply. I've actually read The Caves
of Steel. It was okay. Asimov is good, but he doesn't do as much as
I'd like with his characters. I also read this other one. It was

called Phobos, by Ty Drago. I don't think the author's done anything


else. That one was much better.

Somebody recommended Kiln People by David Brin, but I've haven't picked
that one up yet.

- Ty

------------------------------------------

nicolaz

unread,
Aug 24, 2005, 4:06:12 PM8/24/05
to
Well, as I was shambling around my house ("Whaaraargh..."), dreaming of
the vast millions I'm raking in (insert creepy sound of zombie
giggling), I also started to think up a rather spiffy (well, to me, and
only for now--you know how these things change) fantasy novel. One day
I'll write it. One day soon (soon, for me=within ten years, sigh).
I've also written the draft of a skiffy novelette but just haven't, you
know, got around to polishing it or publishing it. And I just wrote an
essay for a non-fiction anthology about SF and science. I'm still
here. Just trundling down the Aud path temporarily.

And thanks, Mark, for the kind words.

Nicola
www.nicolagriffith.com

James Nicoll

unread,
Aug 24, 2005, 5:38:57 PM8/24/05
to
In article <1124913972.6...@g49g2000cwa.googlegroups.com>,

nicolaz <nic...@aol.com> wrote:
>Well, as I was shambling around my house ("Whaaraargh..."), dreaming of
>the vast millions I'm raking in (insert creepy sound of zombie
>giggling), I also started to think up a rather spiffy (well, to me, and
>only for now--you know how these things change) fantasy novel. One day
>I'll write it. One day soon (soon, for me=within ten years, sigh).
>I've also written the draft of a skiffy novelette but just haven't, you
>know, got around to polishing it or publishing it. And I just wrote an
>essay for a non-fiction anthology about SF and science. I'm still
>here. Just trundling down the Aud path temporarily.
>
Oh, sure. Use facts. You can prove anything that is even
remotely true with facts.

nicolaz

unread,
Aug 24, 2005, 7:44:18 PM8/24/05
to

Use facts? Nifty idea. Let's try to explain the concept to The Powers
That Be...

Nicola
www.nicolagriffith.com

Matt Hughes

unread,
Aug 24, 2005, 10:02:12 PM8/24/05
to
On 23 Aug 2005 22:11:17 GMT, "Default User" <defaul...@yahoo.com>
wrote:

>How hard is it to write a sig file with a blurb and link about your
>book and then spend a half-hour a day posting topical material to RASFW?

Not that hard. I do it from time to time. BTW, if anybody's really
interested in sf with a mystery/police procedural cross-over, the link
below takes you to the first chapter of my Vancean
cop-in-the-collective-unconscious novel.

See? That's how it's done.

Matt Hughes
http://www.archonate.com/black-brillion

BSP: The Gist Hunter & Other Stories should be in stores -- ask for it
by name

John F. Eldredge

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Aug 24, 2005, 11:31:58 PM8/24/05
to
On Thu, 25 Aug 2005 02:02:12 GMT, Matt Hughes <mhu...@mars.ark.com>
wrote:

>On 23 Aug 2005 22:11:17 GMT, "Default User" <defaul...@yahoo.com>
>wrote:
>
>>How hard is it to write a sig file with a blurb and link about your
>>book and then spend a half-hour a day posting topical material to RASFW?
>
>Not that hard. I do it from time to time. BTW, if anybody's really
>interested in sf with a mystery/police procedural cross-over, the link
>below takes you to the first chapter of my Vancean
>cop-in-the-collective-unconscious novel.
>
>See? That's how it's done.
>

Lee Killough wrote at least two science-fiction police procedurals
that I recall, _The Doppelganger Gambit_ and _Deadly Silents_.

--
John F. Eldredge -- jo...@jfeldredge.com
PGP key available from http://pgp.mit.edu
"Reserve your right to think, for even to think wrongly is better
than not to think at all." -- Hypatia of Alexandria

Default User

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Aug 25, 2005, 12:38:34 PM8/25/05
to
Matt Hughes wrote:

> On 23 Aug 2005 22:11:17 GMT, "Default User" <defaul...@yahoo.com>
> wrote:
>
> > How hard is it to write a sig file with a blurb and link about your
> > book and then spend a half-hour a day posting topical material to
> > RASFW?
>
> Not that hard. I do it from time to time.

And many of we standard readertypes appreciate when live-action authors
contribute to the discussion. If a bit of self-promotion is involved,
well hey, no problem.

The whole sockpuppet nonsense is really grating. It's like those people
that post to a newsgroup, "look at this cool website I stumbled across!"

Brian

GSV Three Minds in a Can

unread,
Aug 25, 2005, 1:05:15 PM8/25/05
to
Bitstring <3n6aga...@individual.net>, from the wonderful person
Default User <defaul...@yahoo.com> said
<snip>

>The whole sockpuppet nonsense is really grating. It's like those people
>that post to a newsgroup, "look at this cool website I stumbled across!"

Grating, but useful. I mean how else are you going to get an author to
advise you that they are a) stupid, b) dishonest, and c) associated with
<book X>, which you should avoid at all costs?

--
GSV Three Minds in a Can
Contact recommends the use of Firefox; SC recommends it at gunpoint.

Bill Snyder

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Aug 25, 2005, 1:41:34 PM8/25/05
to
On Thu, 25 Aug 2005 18:05:15 +0100, GSV Three Minds in a Can
<G...@quik.clara.co.uk> wrote:

>Bitstring <3n6aga...@individual.net>, from the wonderful person
>Default User <defaul...@yahoo.com> said
><snip>
>>The whole sockpuppet nonsense is really grating. It's like those people
>>that post to a newsgroup, "look at this cool website I stumbled across!"
>
>Grating, but useful. I mean how else are you going to get an author to
>advise you that they are a) stupid, b) dishonest, and c) associated with
><book X>, which you should avoid at all costs?

Ringo's always been willing to do it without a sockpuppet. Maybe
he'll start a trend.

--
Bill Snyder [This space unintentionally left blank.]

Nix

unread,
Aug 25, 2005, 5:07:06 PM8/25/05
to
On Tue, 23 Aug 2005, Dorothy J. Heydt stipulated:
> Randall Garrett's Lord Darcy series are also SF mysteries, though
> when you look at them you may think "Wait a minute, these people
> are using magic, it must be fantasy." The series was started to
> play off one of the bees in the bonnet of the abovementioned John
> Campbell: that psionic powers (telepathy, telekinesis, etc.) were
> real, were latent in some or all humans, and were behind various
> reports of "magic" that would otherwise be dismissed as fairy
> tales. In Darcy's world psionic magic works and has been studied
> and codified for centuries, with the result that technology
> hasn't gotten as far as it has in our universe. Lord Darcy is a
> criminal investigator for the Duke of Normandy and is frequently
> called to London or elsewhere to investigate crimes against the
> King's Peace. The Darcy stories have been collected in an
> anthology, _Lord Darcy_ by Baen. Don't be put off by the
> ridiculous cover.

It's on the to-get list now: thank you :)

(so your excellent post in response to Ty `sockpuppet' Drago was not
entirely wasted after all.)

--
`... published last year in a limited edition... In one of the
great tragedies of publishing, it was not a limited enough edition
and so I have read it.' --- James Nicoll

Nix

unread,
Aug 25, 2005, 5:08:32 PM8/25/05
to
On Wed, 24 Aug 2005, Wayne Throop stated:

> Well OK. But getting brain-matter blasted all over the room (and people
> therein), or fishing around in a spine for an implant, or ripping an
> implant out of the eyeball of the still-living implantee with a pair of
> pliers

Ah yes. Richard Morgan: strong evidence against the ridiculous yet
persistent characterization of academics as some sort of sissy. :))

Steve

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Aug 25, 2005, 7:27:41 PM8/25/05
to
On 23 Aug 2005 09:35:32 -0700, "Dr. Dave" <dt...@ida.org> wrotD:


>> Can anyone recommend to me any sf mysteries that might be worth a read?
>

>Absolutely.
>
>1. HELLSPARK, by Janet Kagan. Still the best example I know of.
>Anthropological sf.

I'll second and third this -- Sharon and I own three copies o we can
loan one out and still have one for each of us, just in case we need
to reread it again.

For fun you might look up some of the Henry Kuttner/Lewis Padgett "Joe
The Robot" stories...

Steve
--

Local Custom audiobook, read by Michael Shanks
on sale now from Buzzy Multimedia
Liaden Universe Companion on sale at korval.com

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